The Pope Francis Effect: Confession Boom Continues


Back in May, we were delighted to share the news that a dramatic increase in confessions in Italy and Latin America was taking place in the wake of Pope Francis’ election.

Well, it seems now that the British are getting in on it too.

In a survey of Catholic priests throughout England and Wales, over two thirds reported that since the election of Pope Francis, the number of people going to confession has risen noticeably, including many young people and people who had been away from the Church for years.

Bloody fantastic.

Story here.

pope young people



Categories:Culture Pope Francis Youth

  • Karl

    I am in Las Vegas. Here I find very few priests who are even interested in hearing confession. Frequently there are too many people waiting in line and not enough time for them all to have their confession heard. Also the priests in general seem impatient and lacking in compassion. Haven’t they ever read the story of the Cure D’ars? He heard confessions for hours. That is what we need. We are sick, we need confession, but how can we even go if the priests don’t help us? How can we go if the priests are not even available? We should have priests available at all times to hear confession. What is more important? Do they have any idea how much pain and even despair is caused by their lack of interest in confession? What is more important than helping a sinner repent and receive absolution? If they can’t make that their focus then what is the point? I feel that I can’t even go any more because I get the feeling the priests could not care if I go, they just want to get it over with so they can get on with whatever they think their real job is, they look on the whole thing as a farce, etc. I have not found one priest here who makes himself available throughout the week for confession. Maybe we need a “confession specialist” who can live like the Cure D’Ars and help sinners come back to God. The cold, callous treatment will just repel people, even if they really want to confess. Wake up, priests, please, and help us.

  • Janet

    Well it has not taken place in my own parish Church here in Cincinnati Ohio. There was just one other person waiting to confess a few days ago. It must be sporadic in different places because like I said it is NOT happening in my parish

  • http://Facebook Betty Pruzinsky

    I was turned off by a priest who said I shouldn’t come to confession if I didn’t have any sins. When I tried to tell him that I promised the Blessed Virgin that I would, he said “I don’t care who you promised” and “…this goes along with church teaching also.”

    • Teresa

      Unfortunately, you do run into priests once in a while that are more a detriment to the spiritual welfare of their flock than helpful. Find another confessor. Reminds me of a story I once heard where the priest was tired and cranky, and knew at least which family this little girl in the confessional was……called her by name and said… and so….come back when you’ve killed somebody. Kind of humorous, but in a bad way.

    • John S.

      If one has no sins one should not approach the confessional as their are no sins to absolve. That said, anyone who believes they have no sins to confess is deluding themselves and likely have many more sins than they realize. Pope John Paul II went to confession weekly. I go to confession weekly. If we make a good examination of conscience we will find that we always have sins to confess.

  • Bill

    Confession should be held BEFORE mass begins… that is the best way to get people to see the connection between that sacrament and the Mass.

  • Greg Aitchison

    Now if only more priests could be convinced of offering more scheduled times of Confession for their parishioners…

    The typical “once a week for 1 hour on a Saturday” certainly doesn’t inspire folks to think many people are coming (or will come) to Confession and it doesn’t offer much variety for those who have a tough time making Saturdays work. Why not start offering a Wednesday night from 7-8 pm in addition to the typical Saturday for an hour time?

    • SAA5of5

      Make sure anyone you know that is serious about regular confession that they can always make an appointment with their parish priest/pastor. They’re happy to do everything they can to make themselves available. I don’t know a priest that isn’t thrilled to see people turning to the sacraments for grace and strength. I know it’s tougher in some areas, the clergy are stretched to the limit, etc., but don’t let anything stop you from pursuing a life drawing closer to the Lord!

    • CL

      Good comment. We’re blessed here to have most parishes offer Confession before some daily Masses, albeit short times. But we also are the diocesan center of our area and our Cathedral offers Confession every day – 1/2hour before Mass. The priests sometimes even hear them after Mass. Praise be to God

    • Carole

      Our priest is a blessing. In addition to appointments and Sat afternoon, we have Tuesday evening after Benediction and EARLY ( 7a.m. – 7:45, before morning Mass) Friday morning!

      • Beth

        Carole – you are lucky. I do wish our parish would have at least an hour in the evening each week. I cannot make it on Saturdays often, and the lines are long before the vigil Mass! Appts. are okay, but some like to remain anonymous, behind screen.

    • Teresa

      Great idea, but I have actually suggested that, and the priests I’ve talked to say that there aren’t enough of them to warrant the time. Still dealing with the “priest shortage”. :(

      • Teresa

        All this said, and I will say I was very pleasantly surprised yesterday afternoon, when I walked into Church there was actually a LINE waiting for confession!!!! Of course it was the first Saturday, but I was elated to see that!!!!



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